Notes on the Will of Rebecca RAYNER (1829-1800)
Rebecca was the widow of Joseph RAYNER (1727-1787) and after his death remained on at the farm and did not remarry. She wrote her Will on the 18 September 1792 and added a codicil on the 20 December 1798. When her Will was proven she had apparently died only some months before but her son Joseph was the only executor still living. From the Will was also the only information I had that her daughter Ann, a spinster, had died. There was no indication given of when she died. Her daughter Henrietta was married to a member of the BELL family. In my Brothers Keeper files I had a Henrietta RAYNER who was a witness to the marriage of a ‘Rachel RAYNER’ in 1779. Although Rachel’s name is misspelt, according to their mother’s Will, the information from both sources gives me the date that Rachael RAYNER married which was previously unknown to me. Because the RAYNERs are so prolific I usually only follow the male lines. But I do add to my Brothers Keeper files any information I may receive about daughters who have married and lived elsewhere. Like so many people at this time Rebecca could not read or write and ‘signed’ her Will with an ‘X’.
1795 Will of Rebecca RAYNER
In the name of God Amen, I Rebecca RAYNER of Halstead in the County of Essex, Widow, do make this my last Will and Testament in manner following (that is to say) that I give and devise all these my two cottages, tenements or dwellings with their respective appurtenances situate and being in Hedingham – xxxx-(unr) in Halstead, and more in the several occupations of John WEBB and Simon BROWN, unto and to use of my grandson James the Younger, son of James COOK of Halstead aforesaid, gardener, his heirs and assigns forever, also give and bequeath the sum of Fifty Pounds of lawful money of Great Britain to my daughter Rachael, the wife of the said James COOK the Elder. Also I give and bequeath the Sum of Fifty Pounds of like money to my daughter Henrietta BELL of Sible Hedingham in the said County, widow. Also I give and bequeath the sum of Five Pounds apiece of like money unto my daughter Hannah, the wife of George BAINES of Ridgewell in the County aforesaid, farmer. And to my son William RAYNER of Blackmore End in Wethersfield in the said County, farmer. All which xxxx several and respective requests or sums of money I will and direct shall be paid my executor herein named within one year next after my decease. Also I give and bequeath all my wearing apparel of every kind and all my plate (except my silver cup) unto my daughter Ann RAYNER, spinster, to and for her own use. Also I give and bequeath my said silver cup unto my son Joseph RAYNER to and for his own use. Also I give and bequeath all singular the rest and residue of my goods, chattels, monies, securities for money and four estate and effects of what nature or kind soever (unreadable insert). After payment thereout of my plain but general expenses, just debts, and all charges attending the due execution the due execution of this my Will unto my said son Joseph RAYNER and my said daughter Ann RAYNER equally to be divided between them share and share alike. And lastly I do hereby nominate and appoint them my said son and daughter Joseph RAYNER and Ann RAYNER joint executors of this my last Will and Testament and also guardians of my said grandson James COOK as to the said cout??? And promises hereuntofore devised to him and receivers of the rents thereof for his use during his minority. Hereby revoking and declaring void all former Wills and Testaments by me at any time heretofore made and declaring this to be my last Will and Testament. In whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this eighteenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand and ninety-five.
The Mark of the said Rebecca RAYNER ‘X’
Signed, Sealed, Published and Declared the last Testature as and for her last Will and Testament in the Presence of us, who at her request and in the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names :
Witnesses : John USHER; John BELL and Joseph BELL.
I, the before named testatrix Rebecca RAYNER do make this codicil to my foregoing Will and testament as follows: viz; Whereas I have sometime ago given my xxples and utensils in husbandry of every kind unto my son William RAYNER to and for his ever and absolutely and forever and without any manner of conditions whatsoever; Now therefore in order to prevent doubts and disputes after my decease by and between my other children of and concerning the same I do hereby ratify and confirm my gift thereof already made to be above as mentioned and my said Will in all respects. In Witness thereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this twentieth day of December in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and ninety eight.
Signed, Sealed, Published and Declared the last Testature as and for her last Will and Testament in the Presence of us : J USHER and Hannh xxxxxxx.
Proved on the 30th day of October in the year of our Lord 1800 before the presence of the Reverend Thos ROBERTS clerk surrogate & by the oath of Joseph RAYNER son of the deceased and surviving executor.to remain. Administration was granted he being being sworn to administer.
30 Oct 1800
Joseph RAYNER son of the deceased, and the surviving executor, and within married (?) was sworn to the xxx this Will and to the true transference thereof and that to the best of his knowledge and belief personal effects of the deceased do not amount to the sum of six hundred pounds.
Before me: T ROBERTS, surrogate
Testatrix died in this parish
About five months since.
Collated with the original Will
Of which the above is a true copy
This 26th day of August 1809.
I O BARKER (his position ?)
Wh MARYON his clerk